Home > Democratic, Republican > What political professions do people think are more honest

What political professions do people think are more honest

December 17, 2013

Gallup has posted some interesting poll results relating to honesty and ethics for professions. There are results for 22 professions broken down by party line and also broken down by age. The whole list is interesting but I will highlight a few political professions I think are worth noting.


There is a 24% difference in the honesty/ethics of police officers between Republicans (68%) and Democrats (44%). It isn’t surprising that many view police officers as being dishonest. Over the last few years there has been a notable increase in the number of stories about police raids gone wrong, places such as New York City doing stop and frisks on minorities, and police unions protecting officers when they are caught doing wrong. Personally I believe most police officers are honest and truly wish to serve and protect the public. I don’t find it surprising then than Republicans would generally believe police officers are more honest. Yet I am surprised that so many Democrats find officers to be dishonest or ethically lacking. Police officers do not make laws or create the system that is abused by a few amongst them. The job of police officers is to enforce laws and ordinances created by bureaucrats within the very government that Democrats profess to want more of. I find this probably the most interesting divide in this poll.


The difference between local officeholders and state officeholders in another interesting poll finding. But in this case I would focus more on the independent numbers. Independents are more likely to think any local or state officeholder is dishonest. This is especially true for state officeholders. Only about one in ten independent respondents believe state officeholders can be trusted. It would be interesting to see this poll done in South Dakota with the current GOED/EB-5 investigation going on? I wonder if even 10% of independent or Democrat respondents would have faith in the honesty of state officeholders. Also worth noting is that people age 55 and older are less likely to believe local and state officeholders are honest.


The last response I would like to look at is members of Congress and lobbyists. The difference between the groups isn’t as interesting as the overall low numbers both groups get. I do find it odd that Independents would have a little more faith in the honesty of Congress members. This is counter to how they feel about local and state officials. Neither Congress or lobbyists are particularly trusted by these results. There are more Democrats that trust the honesty of lobbyists. I find that odd as I sit here and listen to Senate Democrats deride the new budget deal (which they have already said they will vote for) because it doesn’t remove tax breaks for special interest groups. I know the DC politicians of both party’s understand where these tax breaks come from, but do that many average Democrats not realize these tax breaks come from lobbyists? I find such trust for lobbyists from Democrats to be the most disheartening result found in this Gallup poll. Finally I would note that younger people are more likely to trust both members of Congress and lobbyists.

Overall I would say it is interesting that Republicans are more likely to trust police officers and local politicians. While Democrats are more likely to trust members of Congress and lobbyists. These results mirror the general perception that Democrats support a large central government while Republicans support more local control. It will be very interesting to see this poll again in a year after the 2014 election has completed. Will the divide be greater at that time? If I were a betting person I would put money a much larger divide after a very heated election.

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